Causes and Effects of Noise Pollution

June 22, 2015

st0621-01Most of us are highly used to, or perhaps even immune to, the sounds we hear in everyday life — loud music, the television, people talking on their phones, traffic, and even pets barking in the middle of the night.

All of these have become a part of the urban culture and rarely disturb us.

However, when the sound of the television keeps you from sleeping all night or the traffic starts to give you a headache, it stops becoming just noise and starts turning into noise pollution. Noise that tends to disrupt the natural rhythm of life makes for one solid pollutant.

Some of the causes of noise pollution are industrialization, transportation, and construction activities. Industrialization is a cause because factories use large machines that are capable of producing great amounts of noise.

Transportation negatively contributes to noise pollution as well. Large numbers of vehicles on roads, planes flying over houses, and underground trains can possibly lead to a situation in which a healthy person loses his or her ability to hear properly.

As a result, there are many consequences concerning health and the environment. Sleep disorders, cardiovascular issues, and disturbing wildlife are just a few effects of noise pollution.

Noise pollution is able to cause sleeping disorders by disturbing the sleep pattern of a person, which causes fatigue and irritation. As of cardiovascular issues, studies suggest that high intensity noise causes high blood pressure and increases heart beat rate as it disrupts the normal blood flow.

Moreover, one of the largest effects of noise pollution is its disturbance in wildlife. The ill effects of excessive noise begin at home. Dogs tend to act more aggressively in environments with higher noise levels. They become easily disoriented and face many behavioral problems.

In nature, animals face a higher risk because they depend on hearing to catch prey or hide from predators. This can cause the population of certain species to drop quickly.

Species that depend on mating calls to reproduce are often unable to hear these calls due to excessive manmade noise. As a result, they are unable to reproduce, thereby causing a decline in populations.

Others require sound waves to echolocate and find their way when migrating. Disturbing their sound signals means such animals get lost easily and fail to migrate when they should. To cope with the increasing sound levels around them, animals become louder, which may further add to the pollution levels.

As of right now, there are not many solutions to getting rid of noise pollution completely, but getting more people to understand it is a good place to start.


st0621-01-1 Sarah Choi
La Canada High School 10th Grade

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